CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – A cruise ship based out of Charleston returned to port on Tuesday morning. It’s the first time the ship will be in its homeport since the beginning of the pandemic.

Carnival Sunshine was scheduled to return to sailing out of the Port of Charleston beginning January 13, 2022.

But the ship has been under investigation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for possibly having COVID-19 cases.

Carnival ship ‘Sunshine’ is operating under a “Restricted” status because of COVID-19, it will return to port without passengers on Tuesday where it will prepare for return voyages to the Bahamas and the Eastern Caribbean.

News 2 previously reached out to the SC Ports after the ‘Gem’ arrived in the harbor.

“Following a long-term pause in cruise operations since March 2020 in response to the global pandemic, SC Ports has worked with cruise partners and DHEC to align with all CDC requirements and cruise line protocols as cruise operations resume,” said Liz Crumley with the South Carolina Ports Authority in a statement.

Guidance from the port shows it has contracted a vendor to deploy disinfectant materials to large areas and will disinfect the passenger terminal and gangway ahead of each vessel’s arrival.

While a ship is at the dock, a disinfection team will disinfect high-touch areas on a constant basis, including handrails, doorknobs, and other surfaces.

Facemasks are also required to be worn by all staff, guests, and crew members.